WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Cayman Islands once enjoyed the lofty status of a Level 1 country, meaning it had a very low risk of COVID-19. But on Monday, the U.S. CDC slapped a Level 4 advisory on the islands as the State Department warned Americans against travel there.
“Do Not Travel” screamed the warning on the State Department website. It comes after The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, (CDC), issued the Level 4 Travel Health Notice due to a very high level of COVID-19 in the country.
“If you must travel to the Cayman Islands, make sure you are fully vaccinated before travel,” the CDC warned, while adding: “Because of the current situation in the Cayman Islands, even fully vaccinated travelers may be at risk for getting and spreading COVID-19 variants.”
The updated warning on the British Caribbean territory comes as The Cayman Islands has emerged as the world’s hotspot for new COVID-19 cases.
Cayman’s daily average rate of 147 new COVID cases means it leads the world when that figure is adjusted for Cayman’s population size.
The number of people testing positive jumped almost five-fold in the past 14 days, the data shows. This increase is also the fastest in the world when countries with only a handful of cases are excluded.
The Cayman Islands has 2,676 total cases, 12 hospitalizations and two deaths since the pandemic began in 2020. There are some 1,600 active cases. Some 77 percent or over 54,000 of CI’s population is fully vaccinated.